Forward by Ron Meuser, Jr.
Jen Yackley and I originally met with Dana (who wrote the story below), her husband Ed and his service dog Rex to hear their story and learn how I can help. They founded an organization called Soldier’s 6 whose mission is to provide honorable discharged veterans, police officers, and firefighters with specially trained K-9 dogs. The support they provide these brave individuals is nothing short of amazing and, unfortunately, very much needed. We hear from our police officer and firefighter clients with PTSD that the suffering doesn’t end when the job is over and many don’t want the job to end. Dana and Ed’s story is very real, heartbreaking, and a reminder that we must be continuously supportive in any way we can. Please join Meuser, Yackley & Rowland, P.A. in supporting this worthy organization by going to https://www.soldiers6.com/how-can-i-help
I never quite fit in anywhere. As a police wife, as an injured officers wife, and now as a retired police officers wife. The uniform never did it for me. Sure, I was proud of him and his accomplishments, but beyond that, strip down and leave that nasty shit in the garage. Please don’t bring the stench of the streets into our home.
It was bad enough it weighed on his mind. I knew his job well, almost too well. I rode with him a lot. I was in school to be a cop myself. Our youngest was in kindergarten so timing was right for me to head back to school. Or was it? I never really fit in. I always felt this pull to be home but the job called my name ever since I was a kid. Yet I never fit it.
This isn’t a pity blog so please, no “I am so sorry” comments. These are just true feelings about my path. I was never the kid in school to hang with the girls. You could always find me with the boys. I learned at an early age that girls are drama, and it was easier to shoot hoops with the boys. But why as a grown adult, do I still struggle to find my place?
I never mixed with the cop wives – no thanks. No one reached out to me when my husband was in the grips of PTSD and nearly catatonic. I most likely would have welcomed a phone call from them as I needed a friend myself. Now he’s retired, and just a name maybe mentioned every now and again. Maybe I was too real? I didn’t care about the uniform. Believe me, there were plenty of other clothing options – clean clothing options that I thought he looked good in. Not his polyester, sweat soaked, blood stained, ketchup from lunch, coffee spill from going Code 3 uniform. You know. The one that made him physically sick to look at the night before his next shift. Maybe that’s it. I am real. I look beyond all of that and see the man I love. My soulmate. My ride or die. My best friend. And it’s then that I know my place in life. All of my obstacles and crap bring me right back to him and our family. I appreciate the path he took and I will always be proud. And I can promise, if anyone ever reached out to me, I can see beyond the uniform and your identity as a police wife, and know somewhere there is a real person who just hasn’t hit the bottom and risen with their partner. You will get there. And when you do, I will be there to dust you off and help show you your path. I will show you your worth.